% in people aged over 85 years ( Australian Institute of Health and Welfare, 2013 ). Falls also contribute to over 30% of injury-related deaths ( Australian Institute of Health and Welfare, 2014 ). Discharge from the hospital is a time of increased risk of falls, with up to 40% of older people falling
Emma Renehan, Claudia Meyer, Rohan A. Elliott, Frances Batchelor, Catherine Said, Terry Haines, and Dianne Goeman
Jonghoon Park, Kazuko Ishikawa-Takata, Sachiko Tanaka, Kyoko Bessyo, Shigeho Tanaka, and Toshihide Kimura
The purpose of this study was to examine the accuracy of uni- and triaxial accelerometers in monitoring step counts and gait intensity in older people who did or did not use an assistive device. Forty-nine healthy and frail older adults wore uniaxial (Lifecorder, Suzuken Co. Ltd.) and triaxial accelerometers (Activity Monitor, Matsushita Electronic Works, Ltd., and Active Style Pro, Omron Healthcare Co., Ltd.) during three trials at different gait speeds. All accelerometers gave relatively accurate step counts for healthy older participants compared with direct observation; however, the error was greater for frail older people with assistive devices. Gait intensity detection error was unaffected by gait speed. Among frail older people with assistive devices, the gait intensity error was smaller than for step count error. To accurately assess the steps walked or the gait intensity among frail older people using assistive devices, more study is needed on these groups of participants.
Kate Ridley and Timothy Olds
To improve the scope of the Youth Compendium of Energy Expenditures, a range of everyday activities of varying intensity should be measured. This study measures the energy cost of children undertaking common household chores, rollerblading and riding a foot-propelled scooter.
Participants were 9- to 14-year-old children. A metabolic cart was used to measure oxygen cost (VO2) of a variety of household chores. A Cosmed K4b2 portable oxygen analyzer was used to measure VO2 during rollerblading and riding a scooter at self-selected speeds. Energy costs for each participant were calculated as child METs.
Mean child MET costs for the household chores ranged from 1.3 to 3.6 METs. Rollerblading and riding a scooter yielded mean child MET costs of 6.5 and 6.3 METs respectively.
Household chores were found to be of light to moderate intensity, while rollerblading and riding a scooter were vigorous activities.
Tim Olds, Carol Ann Maher, and Kate Ridley
Low physical activity has been associated with increased fatness and deceased fitness. This observational study aimed to describe the magnitude, composition, and time-distribution of moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA) in Australian children.
A total of 1132 10 to 13 year old schoolchildren completed a 24-h activity recall diary on 2 to 4 occasions. MVPA was defined as any activity requiring ≥3METs, including sport, play, active transport, chores, and other activities.
MVPA was higher in boys than girls (173 vs 140 min/day; P < .0001), higher on nonschool days than school days (166 vs 143 min/day; P < .0001), and decreased with age (9 min/day per year of age). MVPA consisted of structured sport (37%), active transport (26%), unstructured play (24%), and chores/miscellaneous activities (13%). Every hour of MVPA was associated with a reduction in screen time (26.5 min), non-screen-based sedentary pastimes (8 min), and sleep (5.5 min). The least active quartile of children were more likely to be girls (OR = 3.4), have higher screen time, and sleep more. From 4:00−6:30 PM on school days there were large differences in participation between high-active and low-active children.
Findings suggest MVPA interventions should target girls, screen time and focus on the after-school period.
James Dollman, Tim S. Olds, Adrian Esterman, and Tim Kupke
The study aimed to establish pedometer step cut points in relation to weight status among 2,071 5–16 year old Australians. Height, weight and waist circumference were measured, and participants wore a pedometer for seven days. Pedometer values were taken as the average number of steps per day and weighted according to the ratio of weekdays to weekends. Receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curves were used to identify the optimal pedometer counts to predict overweight. Analysis of covariance (ANCOVA) was used to compare anthropometric variables across pedometer step quintiles. The ROC model for older females was nonsignificant. Optimal cut points were 12,000 for younger males, 11,000 for older males and 10,000 for younger females. These were largely confirmed by ANCOVA. The cut points were lower than previously reported for equivalent age groups. Cultural and environmental differences may necessitate population-specific guidelines to be established.
Jim Dollman, Tim Olds, Kevin Norton, and David Stuart
There is evidence that fitness has been declining and fatness increasing in Australian schoolchildren over the last generation. This study reproduced the methods of a national survey of Australian schoolchildren conducted in 1985. Anthropometric and performance tests were administered to 1,463 10- and ll-year-old South Australians. Compared to the 1985 sample, the 1997 children were heavier (by 1.4−2.9 kg), showed greater weight for height (by 0.13−0.30 kg · m−2.85), and were slower over 1.6 km (by 38−48.5 s). Furthermore, the distribution of values was markedly more skewed in the 1997 data. While there was little difference between the fittest and leanest quartiles in 1997 and their 1985 counterparts, the least fit and fattest quartiles were markedly worse in 1997. This suggests that the decline in fitness of Australian schoolchildren is not homogeneous and that interventions should target groups where the decline is most marked.
Ya-Chen Liu, Wen-Wen Yang, I-Yao Fang, Hope Li-Ling Pan, Wei-Han Chen, and Chiang Liu
Promoting exercise among seniors is a highly desirable strategy for helping seniors face the challenges of becoming older ( Manini & Pahor, 2009 ; Milanović et al., 2013 ). Research has claimed that adequate physical activity for seniors is key to enhancing their physical fitness ( Santos et
Claudia Meyer, Sophie Hill, Keith D. Hill, and Briony Dow
, 2003 ). A potential mechanism for enhancing inclusion of people with dementia in falls prevention strategies has been the advent of consumer directed care within the Australian community care context, designed to provide older people with more control in choice and delivery of care services
Tim Olds and Jim Dollman
The aim of this study was to determine whether changes in fitness performance could be explained by changes in body fatness. Two hundred seventy-nine 10- to 12-year-old children were tested in 1985 as part of a national survey. They were matched for age, sex, body-mass index, and triceps skin-fold thickness with 279 children from a 1997 survey. Average speeds on the 1.6 km walk/run test were compared. Children from the 1997 survey performed significantly worse than their matched peers from the 1985 survey. The decline in performance was evident for boys, girls, and all children. Matching for fatness reduced performance differences by about 61% in boys, and 37% in girls. Declines in fitness performance in this population have not been entirely due to increases in fatness.
Yoav Gimmon, Hisham Rashad, Ilan Kurz, Meir Plotnik, Raziel Riemer, Ronen Debi, Amir Shapiro, and Itshak Melzer
Across all ages, walking is a fundamental physical activity. Aging is characterized by functional changes in the sensory, neurological, and musculoskeletal systems, affecting motor tasks including gait and postural balance ( Guralnik et al., 1994 ). Most of the falls among older adults occur while